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Prince Harry Helicopter Pilot Qualification: Capt. Wales Awarded Prize

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This is an undated handout photo issued by Britain's Ministry of Defence on Wednesday Feb. 8, 2012 of Britain's Prince Harry as he prepares his Apache helicopter to go out on a mission in El Centro, California. Prince Harry was handed the prize of being the best co-pilot gunner on completing 18 months of rigorous training on the Apache Attack Helicopter. (AP Photo/Sgt Russ Nolan RLC/MoD)
This is an undated handout photo issued by Britain's Ministry of Defence on Wednesday Feb. 8, 2012 of Britain's Prince Harry as he prepares his Apache helicopter to go out on a mission in El Centro, California. Prince Harry was handed the prize of being the best co-pilot gunner on completing 18 months of rigorous training on the Apache Attack Helicopter. (AP Photo/Sgt Russ Nolan RLC/MoD)

LONDON — Britain's defense ministry says Prince Harry has qualified as an Apache attack helicopter pilot, graduating as the best co-pilot gunner in his class after 18 months of training.

The ministry said Thursday the prize recognizes the student whose performance is the best among their peer group.

Known in the military as Capt. Wales, the third-in-line to the British throne was awarded his prize Wednesday.

The prince, who trained in California, in southern Arizona and in Britain, will now fly Apaches on exercises in the U.K.

In December, a British newspaper said Harry had acknowledged he will be deployed to Afghanistan for a second time. He briefly served there from 2007. The defense ministry has declined to confirm details of the prince's future deployments.

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